Finish Your Food, Or Else!

“Finish your food” is something we all heard growing up. And for those of us who are now parents, we find ourselves saying the same thing, or something similar. As kids,  our parents wanted  us to eat enough to grow up healthy, as well as learn a lesson about responsibility and following through on what you have in front of you. There was usually an “or else…” that either verbally followed or was at least implied, and while that could of meant no dessert or (gasp) no TV time, there were consequences that compelled us to finish our food.

As it turns out,  “Finish your food…or else” still exists for grown ups! In Switzerland, there is a restaurant that serves an all you can eat-style buffet where, the owner is adding an additional charge for diners who leave food on their plates! The meal itself costs roughly $13.50 (which is on par or perhaps less expensive than some of the Las Vegas buffets, BTW), but if they bus your table and there’s food leftover, expect to pay the equivalent of an additional $ 5.65 for the wasted food. That’s a pretty tame price compared to the $33 this British restaurant charges!

There’s two sides to the issue. First, is it right to add an additional charge because the customer wastes food? In the buffet game, the customer has more responsibility for the food on their plate that ends up being wasted (restaurants could put servers online to serve the food, but what are they going to say when a customer asks for more,  no?). On the other hand, shouldn’t everyone including businesses takes steps to bring awareness to how much food is wasted? In these countries, the fines are perfectly legal, and one can only imagine that it has had an immediate impact , if at least on their customers. Ever year, roughly 40% of food goes to waste, which has ripple effect through additional resources wasted and the increase of greenhouse gas- emitting landfill.

With BerryBreeze’s commitment to reducing food waste made this an interesting issue for us to consider (being that we are a Las Vegas-based company, where it seems like you can’t through a crab leg without hitting one). What do you think? Should restaurants be able to say “Finish your food!” by adding additional charges to offset customer food waste? Leave a comment below!